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Sec 144 in Rajasthan’s Jodpur ahead of Asaram verdict

The Jodhpur police have imposed prohibitory orders in the city in view of a special SC/ST court announcing its judgment in a rape case against self-styled godman Asaram Bapu within the central Jail premises on April 25

jaipur Updated: Apr 21, 2018 22:15 IST
HT Correspodent
HT Correspodent
Hindustan Times, Jodhpur
Rajasthan news,Asaram Bapu,judgment in a rape case
Asaram’s followers at the court premises during an earlier trial in Rajasthan’s Jodhpur.(Representative Picture/HT File Photo.)

The Jodhpur police have imposed prohibitory orders in the city in view of a special SC/ST court announcing its judgment in a rape case against self-styled godman Asaram Bapu within the central Jail premises on April 25.

The prohibitory orders will be in force until April 30, said Jodhpur police commissioner Ashok Rathore .

“As a preventive measure, we have enforced Section 144 of the CrPC within the police commissionerate area,” he said.

The Rajasthan High Court on Tuesday directed the police commissioner and district administration to make arrangements to protect properties of Jodhpur residents and to ensure that no inconvenience and hurdle be created by the followers of the accused in the city.

The court also directed to deploy adequate police force to maintain law and order in the city.

“Intelligence reports suggest that with the date of pronouncement of judgment being announced, thousands of followers of the Asaram are likely to gather at the Jodhpur court premises from different parts of the country,” Rathore said.

“Past instances during the trial also suggest that supporters in huge numbers are likely to gather in the city and there is serious apprehension that public peace of the city will be disturbed as supporters may indulge in violence and create law and order problem.”

Deputy commissioner of police (east) Amandeep Singh Kapoor said prohibitory orders has been enforced from 10 am on Saturday.

The order prohibits assembly of five or more people within the police commissionerate area.

Invoking Section 44 of the Rajasthan Police Act, 2007, the prohibitory orders ban processions, public meetings and rallies without prior permission from authorized police officials, he said.

Kapoor further said that people are forbidden to carry arms, sharp weapons, explosives, chemical substances in the prohibitory period.

In August 2013, a minor girl accused Asaram of rape at his ashram in Manai village near Jodhpur.

The girl, who hailed from Uttar Pradesh’s Shahjahanpur, was a student living in the ashram.

Asaram was arrested on August 31, 2013 and sent to the Jodhpur central jail.

On April 7, a special SC/ST court in Jodhpur reserved its judgment for April 25 in the case after the final arguments that stretched for over five months, were completed.

First Published: Apr 21, 2018 22:15 IST